The European Parliament’s decision not to immediately pass the new EU Copyright Directive in July was seen by many as a major setback. It was defeated by 318 to 278, a margin of 40 votes. This means the proposed legislation now moves forward to a full plenary debate and vote next Wednesday 12 September.

As the music industry faces this pivotal moment, it is worth reflecting how we got here and what we are now facing.

The creative industries as a whole have long argued that embryonic digital legislation passed in the mid 1990s is outdated and simply not fit for purpose. The legislative process is slow at the best of times. Meanwhile, the tech industry “moved fast and broke things,” incurring the wrath of creators whose livelihoods have been upended as a result.

The publication of the draft EU Copyright Directive in late 2016 was an achievement in itself. Not only did the draft legislation address copyright protection and safe harbour loopholes, it also contained provisions concerning fairness and transparency towards creators. Following further debate and lobbying, is even more of an achievement that the key elements of the draft directive remain mostly intact.

The Directive has not been without it’s critics, as is the case with any proposed legislation. Academics, libraries and dignitaries such as Sir Tim Berners-Lee have all put forth concerns. We in the music industry can acknowledge some concerns as understandable even if we believe they are unfounded.

What is not understandable are the thoroughly vile and dishonest tactics deployed during the course of this year, whose objective is to stop the legislation in its tracks at any cost. The scale of this activity reads like set pieces straight out of the Cambridge Analytica playbook.

Some in the music industry have questioned how we fight back given the vast funding involved and the sheer scale of this enterprise. But fight back we must and the actions of those we face only serve to give us greater strength.

As any Jiu-Jitsu grandmaster will tell you: use your opponents’ force against them. In this case, we should call out the deceitful actions from within the tech sector and elsewhere and those actions speak louder than any words.

  • The Financial Times reported some MEPs received death threats

  • MEPs were each bombarded with over 60,000 emails from bots

  • These emails contained identical content according to The Trichordist

  • The same blog named the domain name from which a large number of these emails originated and its link to a US Inc. entity.

  • The same tactics have been found on Twitter: multiple bot accounts promoting #SaveOurInternet and similar hashtags

  • This contrasts to real world protests that only drew a few hundred protestors combined across Europe. The bots did not show up.


These actions must also be viewed against the current backdrop where tech firms have been scrutinised for avoiding responsibility concerning:

  • Blatantly dishonest content

  • Content that incites hatred and violence

  • Little accountability in how such content is disseminated

  • Minimal transparency in how user data is abused in facilitating all this

Mark Zuckerberg and Jack Dorsey are amongst those tech executives rebuked by lawmakers on both sides of the Atlantic, for failing to take responsibility and failing to act in managing their own platforms. This is reflective of a broader failure that lies at the heart of a misguided and libertarian ideal, that somehow tech firms are exempt from laws and rules that govern the rest of the world.

The music industry and broader creative and media industries are made up of real people, filled with passion and blood pumping through their veins. They compose their own emails, speak to politicians and show up in person.

At the UK Music organized #LoveMusic busking event in London earlier today, artists, executives and even politicians turned out in support. Artists such as Brett Anderson, Ed Harcourt, Dave Rowntree, Madeleina Kay, Newton Faulkner and BASCA Chair Crispin Hunt. In addition a number of cross party British MPs who support the directive including Tom Watson, Nigel Evans and Kevin Brennan were amongst those in attendance.

One has to ask, if those opposing the EU Copyright Directive have such a compelling argument, why do they resort to such deceitful means? If we judge their actions, the arguments of those opposed to the directive hold no legitimacy and the European Parliament should vote in favour of the directive.

Andy Edwards, music manager and consultant

28 Sep 2023 | Press release

Sony Music UK & Ireland COO, Nicola Tuer, will be leaving the business for family reasons at the end of September

Nicola's career at Sony Music UK spans nearly 30 years, steadily rising from the sales department to being appointed Sony's first female Chief Operating Officer in 2014 – making her one of the most senior women in the UK music industry for many...more

28 Sep 2023 | Press release

IFPI launches four new music charts in Egypt, Saudi Arabia, UAE, and North Africa

Further charts follow successful launch of first ever regional MENA chart in November 2022   IFPI, representing the recording industry worldwide, has today announced the launch of four new charts, giving music fans, record labels and artists an official ranking on the top...more

28 Sep 2023 | Press release

UK Music Video Awards 2023: Nominations revealed ahead of awards ceremony on 26 October

HARRY STYLES & METTE LEAD THE FIELD IN THE ANNUAL CELEBRATION OF GLOBAL MUSIC VIDEO CREATIVITY  It’s a tie for the top in this year’s UK Music Video Awards shortlists with 6 nominations apiece for Harry Styles, and breakthrough US artist,...more

28 Sep 2023 | Press release

More winners announced for the Artist & Manager Awards 2023 in association with beatBread

Bello named Manager of the Year for developing Central Cee’s global business (award sponsored by PPL) Debbie ‘Cookie’ Pryce & Susan Banfield aka The Cookie Crew recognised as Pioneers (award sponsored by TikTok) The Flight Club’s Samuel Ademosu & Ruth Gyaniao to...more

28 Sep 2023 | Press release

William Hsieh appointed Managing Director of Universal Music Taiwan

  Universal Music Greater China (UMGC), a division of Universal Music Group (UMG), the world leader in music-based entertainment, today announced the appointment of seasoned industry executive William Hsieh as Managing Director of Universal Music Taiwan, and Senior Vice President of UMGC, effective immediately. William Hsieh will...more

27 Sep 2023 | Press release

AIM Awards 2023: Hospital Records, Rough Bones, Caius Pawson & Resident Music Victorious

Avelino wins Best Independent Album in association with Spotify – takes to stage for 50 years of Hip Hop celebration supported by BBC 1Xtra RAYE and 070 Shakewin Best Track in association with Meta, Shygirl wins UK Independent Breakthrough Other winners include...more

27 Sep 2023 | Press release

Pablo Bowman Navarro wins 3 ASCAP London Music Awards including Songwriter Of The Year

Steve Mac Takes Home Song of the Year and Top Streaming Song for “Shivers” by Ed Sheeran  Daniel Pemberton Wins 2 Box Office Film of the Year Awards; Mogwai and Jonny Greenwood Pick Up TV and Film Composition Awards   ASCAP, the American Society...more

27 Sep 2023 | Press release

The BRIT Awards 2024

Confirmed to return in primetime Saturday evening slotSaturday 2nd MarchBroadcast live exclusively on ITV1 and ITVX Damian Christian continues to oversee as BRIT Committee Chair Mastercard, ITV and The O2 arena renew long-standing partnerships The BRIT Awards 2024 with Mastercard today confirms that next...more

27 Sep 2023 | Press release

Music tech company Audoo appoints Melanie Johnson as Chief Commercial Officer during continued international expansion

  The esteemed business development executive adds to Audoo's growing team of international industry experts. Joining Audoo's global expansion and mission to revolutionise public performance royalties for music creators, licensees and businesses worldwide. Audoo—the music technology company revolutionising public performance royalties—has appointed Melanie...more

27 Sep 2023 | Press release

The Police Officially Join TikTok

  Having originally formed in 1977, one of the most legendary groups of all time known for their infectious melodies and genre bending new wave sounds, The Police (@ThePolice) have officially joined TikTok. Celebrating the 40th anniversary of their groundbreaking album Synchronicity this year, the iconic...more

27 Sep 2023 | Press release

BMG acquires Jet's recordings catalogue

  BMG is pleased to announce it has acquired the recordings catalogue of multi-platinum and award-winning Australian rock band Jet. The deal with BMG includes Australian and New Zealand rights to the band's first two albums, Get Born and Shine On,and the global royalty stream...more

27 Sep 2023 | Press release

John Saunderson rejoins Notting Hill Music Group

The Notting Hill Music Group is delighted to announce the return of John Saunderson as Head of Creative Services. His portfolio will include writer, song and catalogue development, overseeing collaborations and songcamps all over the world and the identification and...more

27 Sep 2023 | Press release

Let Me Hear Your Data Talk: Spindl Revolutionizes Data Analysis for the Music Business

Data is everything in the music business. It can tell you all you need to know, but it too often stays silent. Fragmented across file formats and platforms, music pros don't know precisely what they have, what it's worth, what...more

26 Sep 2023 | Press release

Music Venue Trust calls on UK government to extend business rate relief for grassroots music venues

Venues Closing at Rate of More Than One a Week with 4000 Job Losses in Last 12 Months Music Venue Trust (MVT), the charity which represents almost 900 UK grassroots music venues (GMVs), has called on the UK Government to extend business...more

26 Sep 2023 | Press release

Music Mudder 2023 raises over £61,000 for Nordoff and Robbins Music Therapy

  Music Mudder 2023, the hotly contested music-inspired endurance event organised by leading talent agency Wasserman Music, in partnership with music therapy charity, Nordoff and Robbins, successfully raised over £61,000 and counting for the charity, leaving no clean shirts in sight in...more

26 Sep 2023 | Press release

BBC Radio 6 Music presents New Music Fix Live in Glasgow this November

Today on their New Music Fix Daily show on BBC Radio 6 Music (7-9pm), Tom Ravenscroft and Deb Grant announced New Music Fix Live – a four-day celebration of emerging artists and Glasgow's vibrant music scene, which will be broadcast...more

26 Sep 2023 | Press release

Stars to take to the stage to honour Gary Brooker

LEGENDS INCLUDING ROGER TAYLOR, ERIC CLAPTON, MIKE RUTHERFORD AND PAUL CARRACK TO PERFORM AT CHARITY GIG AT GUILDFORD G LIVE ON 4TH DECEMBER  A very special concert is being held to commemorate Gary Brooker MBE on Monday 4th December 2023 at...more

25 Sep 2023 | Press release

Warner Music India expands partnership with Sky Digital India

Warner Music India has signed a joint venture deal with Sky Digital, India’s fastest-growing Punjabi music content consortium and aggregator, significantly expanding their partnership. The companies penned a strategic partnership in 2021, but have now entered into a new phase of...more

25 Sep 2023 | Press release

Dotun Bolaji joins Primary Talent International

  Primary Talent International’s Managing Partner and CEO Matt Bates today announces that Dotun Bolaji has joined the company as an agent, effective immediately. He will be based in the company’s London offices. Bolaji joins from Runway Artists. He brings a roster...more

25 Sep 2023 | Press release

Building an inclusive & equitable pipeline for Future Music Leaders: Jewel John announced as 6th Richard Antwi Scholar

The Richard Antwi Scholarship announced today that Jewel John is its sixth scholar, who will be awarded a full scholarship for a place on University of Westminster's highly regarded Music Business Management MA course, commencing later this month. Jewel will also receive an additional new 'London Living Wage Stipend', through generous funding from Universal Music UK,...more

25 Sep 2023 | Press release

Stormzy to play 2024 Formula 1 British Grand Prix as Silverstone takes music offering to the next level

Rudimental and Pete Tong presents Ibiza Classics will also feature, with Thursday's Opening Concert acts still to be announced     Silverstone has today announced the first names on its star-studded music line up for the 2024 British Grand Prix. Having attracted record...more

24 Sep 2023 | Press release

Greatest Hits Radio launches new Premium station – Greatest Hits Grooves

Following the recent launch of Ken Bruce’s Secret 60s, Greatest Hits Radio has today announced its latest Premium station – Greatest Hits Grooves. Rhythm of the Night host Des Paul will be bringing 24/7 Soul, Funk, Disco and Motown to listeners who subscribe to Greatest Hits Radio’s Premium service....more

22 Sep 2023 | Press release

Abbey Road Studios announces the winners from the second Abbey Road Music Photography Awards

The awards celebrate the unforgettable, unique and unsung music images of 2022     Abbey Road Studios, the world’s most celebrated recording studio has tonight confirmed the winners from the Abbey Road Studios Music Photography Awards 2023, following a glittering awards ceremony at...more

21 Sep 2023 | Press release

ZEBRALUTION Restructures Management Team for Strategic Growth

German independent digital distributor ZEBRALUTION is set to restructure its management team, with COO Tina Jürgens and renowned label veteran Konrad von Löhneysen to be appointed Co-CEOs. Company co-founder Kurt Thielen will step down as CEO at the end of...more

21 Sep 2023 | Press release

The inaugural Rolling Stone UK Awards

THE INAUGURAL ROLLING STONE UK AWARDS, IN COLLABORATION WITH RÉMY MARTIN, SET FOR 23RD NOVEMBER AT CAMDEN’S ROUNDHOUSETwo years on from the launch of the UK edition of ROLLING STONE, the world’s greatest music and popular culture magazine, comes the inaugural presentation of the ROLLING STONE UK AWARDS,...more

21 Sep 2023 | Press release

Radio DJ Steve Lamacq appointed new LIVE Chair, and joins LIVE’s evolving Board

LIVE, the voice of the UK’s live music industry, has appointed live music advocate and Radio DJ Steve Lamacq as its new Chair. This comes as LIVE also welcomes its 16th member, Musicians’ Union (The MU), and appoints three new co-opted...more

21 Sep 2023 | Press release

Pieter van Rijn joins the Board of Directors at Downtown Music Holdings

Downtown Music Holdings today announced the appointment of Pieter van Rijn, President of the group’s business and professional services division, Downtown Music, to its Board of Directors. “When we first set out to transform Downtown Music, our B2B division, into a...more

20 Sep 2023 | Press release

Great Escape Announces First Fifty Live Shows


20 Sep 2023 | Press release

UK music-makers call for consent, respect and remuneration to be central to all music AI

  The Council Of Music Makers – representing UK songwriters, composers, artists, musicians, producers and music managers – has today published five fundamentals that should be fully embraced by technology companies and the music industry as they develop new music AI...more

20 Sep 2023 | Press release

The Record Club with Bowers & Wilkins unveils brand new look and celebrates launch across Spotify and TikTok

Record Store Day, National Album Day and Official Charts’ live stream series will be available to watch in full on Spotify from 20 September   The Record Club with Bowers & Wilkins today unveils a brand-new look as the music series supporting new album...more

28 Sep 2023

27 Sep 2023

  • Scott Cohen talks new song investment platform JKBX: ‘We feel very strongly that these are securities’ (see Features)

26 Sep 2023

  • Publishers hit back at X’s move to dismiss infringement lawsuit (see News)

  • Let’s reform streaming without a two-tier system (see Comment)

25 Sep 2023

  • Spotify’s long-awaited HiFi tier could finally be getting closer to launch (see Digital)

22 Sep 2023

  • Deezer raises subscription prices for the second time in 12 months (see Digital)

  • CMOs should license publishing rights for musical works as NFTs (see Opinion)

21 Sep 2023

  • The myth of fan power (see Opinion)

20 Sep 2023

  • Holding Apple accountable: The future of the internet economy depends on it (see Opinion)

  • Who wins and who loses under a user centric streaming model? (see Analysis)

19 Sep 2023

  • BMG goes direct on streaming after revenues triple (see Business)

  • BMI must either cut costs or raise revenue to grow profits - and songwriters are worried (see Features)

18 Sep 2023

  • Investment funds are now selling the rock songs they bought (see Comment)

  • Why Saudi Arabia will invest more in music (see Comment)

15 Sep 2023

  • Streaming services and retailers publish joint vision to drive entertainment market (see Reports)

  • IMPALA responds to Deezer and UMG’s proposal on streaming (see Comment)